DP6552 | School Tracking Across the Baltic Sea

Publication Date

02/11/2007

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Abstract

In spite of their relative vicinity Scandinavian countries and Central European countries (mainly Germany) have substantially different schooling institutions. While the former group of countries delays school tracking until age 16, the latter group anticipates differentiation between age 10 and age 13. This paper proposes a simple median voter model of school design which accounts rather well for these differences. The key idea is that voters weight the potential advantages of early tracking in terms of higher wages and human capital against the information loss associated to early selection.